View finder: 4 must-see Philly photography exhibits


In 2016, everyone’s a photographer. We photograph every meal and seemingly every cat has an Instagram. If a group of friends gets together for happy hour and no one posts a pic, did it even happen? We don’t know anymore. What we do know is that these exhibits feature photographs worth looking at — and that’s rare in the age of the smartphone.

Related: Coffee in a can

“Through the Camera Lens: The Photography of Lewis Carroll”
March 25 – May 15
The Rosenbach
2008 Delancey Pl., 215-732-1600
Part of the Rosenbach’s 150th anniversary celebration of “Alice in Wonderland,” “Through the Lens” explores the photography of Charles Dodgson, more commonly known as Lewis Carroll. Although remembered primarily as an author, Carroll was also quite the shutterbug, and it was through his photography that he met the young girl who would inspire his iconic work. Like all portraits of Victorian children, maybe don’t look them directly in the eye.

Related: Jaxon, your new Northern Liberties hub

March 10-April 30
The Philadelphia Photo Arts Center
1400 N. American St. #103
Launched in October, the Philly Block Project is a year-long collaboration between the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center and conceptual artist Hank Willis Thomas to document the rich past and present of South Kensington while inspiring community connections in the rapidly changing neighborhood. A spring kick-off of sorts, “Preface” will exhibit works by Thomas as well as contributing photographers Lisa Fairstein, Wyatt Gallery, Hiroyuki Ito, Will Steacy, and Lori Waselchuk.

“Picture This: Contemporary Photography and India”
Through April 3
The Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Way
Featuring work by Indian artists across the globe, “Picture This” takes a colorful, dynamic look at contemporary life through the lens of four photographers. Each explores their complex relationship to India as well as questions about identity, history and dislocation. (Put this one near the top of your spring arts to-dos — it closes April 3!)

“Instant Classic”
Closing reception March 26, 1-3 p.m.; Gravy Gallery & Studio
910 N. 2nd St.
If you own a phone, chances are you can edit a photo — even the Kardashians have figured it out. But this, of course, wasn’t always the case. In collaboration with photographer and Polaroid enthusiast Kara Khan, NoLibs-based gallery Gravy presents a celebration of those simpler pre-filter days, when what you snapped was simply what you got. Don’t feel bad that the dream-washed work on view is better than what you could make on your iPhone 6S — these people are professionals, and when it comes to Polaroids, they know how to shake it.

Also don’t miss:

The Philadelphia Art Book Fair
April 1-2
The Annex on Filbert
830 Filbert St.
Looking to majorly upgrade your coffee table offerings? The Philadelphia Art Book Fair will feature rare photography and art books from more than 50 international publishers, institutions and artists.